Presidential Predictions: Republican Primary

So, I've gotten a few questions from friends of mine regarding who, in my opinion, will be the game to be the Republican Presidential Nominee. Yeah, it is still early, but if you follow this stuff, you still can't help thinking about it. OK, so I am a geek and I can't help thinking about it. And, I have thought about it and I honestly have no idea who the candidate will be.

So there, end post.

Not so fast.

When Bush picked Cheney in 1999, a lot of my friends opined that there was no natural Republican "heir" to the Presidency, as if that actually helps (see: Dan Quayle, Al Gore). I predicted at that time that if Bush could manage to get himself re-elected (always the cynic, me) that during the period of late 2006-early 2007 some "leaders" would emerge. I still hold to my theory and think there's already some movement on that front.

More precisely, my prediction was, depending upon Bush's popularity at that time, he would "make" this person. Or this person would try to make himself or herself, by trying to emerge with a particular issue. If Bush is unpopular during this period, this person will try to make himself as a critic, by pointing out where Republicans need to provide more leadership.

Now, putting this theory to the test, we're already seeing some movement, and here's my prospective list.

George Allen - He's really trying to make himself using his "good government" PAC. He was the NRSC Chair in '04 so he has a lot of favors to call in. I still don't think he's as well known as he and the so-called pundits inside the Beltway seem to think. Of course, he is still viable because that seems to be his only problem.

Sam Brownback - He's successfully making himself as the choice of Social Conservatives , but I think he'll come off as too Pat Roberston-esque and not score enough points with a wide enough audience.

Bill Frist - He's trying to make himself, but is shiftless, and delusional in the same way Senators all think they should be President. He needs to quit mentioning he's a doctor, in the same way Kerry needed to shut up about Vietnam (note: we know already). Nonetheless, he's not a leader, he can't win, and the grassroots don't actually like him. I personally think he's filled Trent Lott's shoes quite nicely as Senate Majority Leader, and that's not a compliment.

Newt Gingrich - He is a proven factor, has already made himself and has a great shot because he is viewed as an outsider. He can win Republican primaries, especially in the South. His challenges will come in the Northeast and West, who are more liberal/sheepy. He will also constantly battle the media who will dig up crap on him and demonize him at every turn. He may have trouble with social conservatives regarding his personal past; however, I am a big fan of Newt and hope he goes for it.

Rudy Giuliani - He's still riding the 9/11 wave , and will be the favorite of Northeastern & Liberal Republicans. His liberalism cannot win the South and will have a rough time in the West Midwest.

Chuck Hagel - He's talking, but nobody's really listening.

Mike Huckabee - See Hagel.

John McCain - Ah...the Republican Party's resident attention whore and nastiest critic. He cannot win a real Republican Primary, period. I know what the polls show, but McCain cannot win an election where actual Republicans actually vote. He can skim Iowa or New Hampshire, but will die by early February and get the last nail hammered in his coffin by March. The only places where he might have a shot are the same places where Giuliani will actually win, and that is just because Giuliani is more charismatic and not as batshit nuts.

George Pataki - I think he could beat McCain in the Northeast, but not Giuliani. He's more conservative than Giuliani but too liberal to be taken seriously in the South , West, or Midwest.

Condi Rice - She's the only one that Bush is trying to make. I think she rocks and could take the whole thing, but I also think she's too smart to run for this thankless, crap, weasel job. And let's face it, that reason more than any is why we need her more than ever.

Mitt Romney - He thinks he's made himself, and he'll run, but most of the conservatives who would be biggest base will more likely support Brownback. Romney is a Northeasterner and a Mormon, which won't play well in the South and Protestant Bible Belt. He could do well in the Midwest though, but isn't as well known as most pundits think.

Tom Tancredo - He will get the national security/border security vote, because he is an absolute hero to the people who are focused on that issue (myself included) . I would personally love to see him get in there and mix it up. I think he is too little known to actually win the nomination, being more of a Bob Dornan-type candidate who calls people to task on these important issues. I believe he will be to the immigration issue what Steve Forbes was to the tax issue.

As for my summary opinion, if the primary was tomorrow, and all these people were actually running, I would still be juggling my vote between Gingrich, Rice, and Tancredo. More than anything else, it will be interesting to check back to see how I did with my nominee list.

Of course all this being stated, let me just close by saying
If Dick Cheney would run, which I know not in a million years would ever happen, because of his health and blah blah blah, he'd still be my man. I still love me some Dick.


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